Terps women too much for Coppin, 83-51

No. 17 team on its game in winning sixth straight

College Basketball

December 21, 2004|By Gary Lambrecht | Gary Lambrecht,SUN STAFF

COLLEGE PARK - The Maryland women's team had not played in eight days, yet the 17th-ranked Terrapins showed few signs of rust last night against an intrastate opponent they continue to own.

Led by its dominant frontcourt of freshmen Crystal Langhorne and Laura Harper and a defense that created many easy scoring chances, Maryland took control of unranked Coppin State in the first half and rolled to an 83-51 victory before 2,532 at Comcast Center.

The Terps (8-1), off to their best start in eight seasons and riding their highest ranking in 11 years, have won six straight. They are undefeated in 10 meetings with Coppin State.

The Eagles (6-3), who were held to a season low in scoring, never had a chance last night, as Maryland brought too much athleticism, depth and unselfishness to bear.

Sophomore guard Kalika France, one of three Terps to score in double figures, finished with a game-high 20 points. Langhorne (14 points) and Harper (19 points, nine rebounds) controlled the paint by shooting a combined 13-for-17 and put the defensive clamps on Coppin senior center Leisel Henry, who had nine points.

Junior guard Sherrie Tucker led the Eagles with 17 points.

Maryland forced 25 turnovers and ran its fast break crisply. The Terps scored 33 points off turnovers. They recorded 46 points in the paint.

"[It was] one of our best overall team defensive performances we've had all season. We just did a great job defensively and owning the glass," said Maryland coach Brenda Frese, alluding to Maryland's 46-30 rebounding edge. "It was by far one of our most unselfish games. This team is exciting to watch when we play like that."

Harper, who made seven of 10 field-goal attempts and has shot at least 60 percent from the floor in six games, scored eight of her points during a 15-0 Maryland run that opened the second half. That turned a 37-21 halftime lead into a 52-21 bulge with 15:40 left in the game.

Midway through the first half, it was still a game after Coppin State went on an 8-2 run to pull within 17-14 with 10:04 remaining. But Maryland then changed the game's complexion with a combination of pressuring, man-to-man defense and transition offense that produced a 15-0 run, leaving the Eagles in a 32-14 hole with 4:40 left.

With the exception of 18 turnovers and 55.6 percent shooting from the free-throw line, the Terps looked pretty sharp after their final-exam break.

"When all you have to do is play the game you love, it's easy to come and perform," France said.

COPPIN STATE-Sutton 1-2 0-0 2, Tucker 6-17 3-3 17, Henry 4-8 1-3 9, Plain 2-2 0-0 4, Strickland 4-7 0-0 8, Middleton 0-0 0-0 0, Suber 3-17 0-0 6, R. Williams 1-3 0-0 3, Armstrong 0-0 0-0 0, D. Williams, Wills 0-0 0-0 0, Jefferson 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 22-57 4-6 51.

MARYLAND-Langhorne 6-7 2-6 14, Harper 7-10 5-7 19, Doron 1-8 1-2 4, France 8-14 3-4 20, Smith 2-4 0-0 4, Newman 3-8 0-0 7, Carr 0-2 0-2 0, Henson 0-0 1-2 1, Ross 1-1 2-2 4, Gilchrest 1-1 0-0 3, Perry 3-8 1-2 7. Totals 32-63 15-27 83. Halftime-Maryland 37, Coppin 21. 3-Point goals-Coppin 3-12 (Tucker 2-4, R. Williams 1-3, Suber 0-5), Maryland 4-12 (Gilchrest 1-1, France 1-2, Doron 1-4, Newman 1-5). Fouled out-None. Rebounds-Coppin 30 (Henry 10), Maryland 46 (Harper 9). Assists-Coppin 9 (Plain 3), Maryland 20 (Doron 6). Total fouls-Coppin 23, Maryland 14. Technicals-Coppin team. A-2,532.

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